Monday, 5 March 2012

Surf like a smurf

I surfed for the first time at Wave House @ Sentosa. Tried to, anyway. Even though the FlowRider is the equivalent of the wading pool in a swimming complex, it didn't stop us from being thrown around like rag dolls. Which explains why most of our photos turned out to be of us with our butts in the water and legs in the air. Not cool, but we had so much fun (well, the VERY sore neck the following day wasn't that fun).

My friends managed to take this hilarious snapshot (top) of me "surfing" - doesn't it look like I'm dancing or ice-skating rather than surfing? We also had fun standing by the side watching the pro surfers do their thing. One of them even had a smiley face drawn (with sunblock!) onto his bare back. That should make for one cool tan.

Friday, 2 March 2012


Yup, that's me holding our tickets to Wicked. Only one word to describe the musical: awesomely wicked! Fine, that was two - you see, one adjective didn't quite cut it. The sets, lights, sound and costumes were awesomely elaborate works of art. The actors were talented (though the actor who played Fiyero did trip on his happily-ever-after exit mere moments before the curtains came down) and both the plot and script, with their themes of love, friendship, acceptance and forgiveness, were brimming with brilliance and wicked humour. No wonder it's a Broadway hit. I was even enchanted enough to splash out $70 for the 'Grimmerie' - an awesome book detailing what went on behind the scenes. Oops, can't seem to get enough of the word 'awesome'.

One of my favourite parts of the show was 'Defying Gravity'. It was mesmerizing and touching. See for yourself:

Do catch it if you haven't already. If you're not familiar with the story Wizard of Oz, do google it before you go because it'll only help you appreciate the show better. Get seats in the A Reserve if you want a good view. They don't come cheap at $168/pax (or $148/pax if you have four in your party like we did), but every penny is worth it. Aisle seats would also be a great idea if you don't want your view blocked more than half the time by the poofy hairdo of the lady seated in front of you. True story (cue imagination of the 9gag emoticon).

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Leap year

This year is a leap year, and since Feb 29 won't appear for another 4 years, I hope you had a good one. It seems like the additional day in leap years are the equivalent of adjustments in accounting (my forte isn't in accounting, so do correct me if I'm wrong). It is easy to forget that February is not a 'normal' month. Just think back to all the numerous April Fools messages/emails you received over the years informing you that so-and-so have had a shotgun marriage and want to invite you to their baby's first month party happening on February 30. My responses have ranged from "Right. Try harder," to a very eloquent "...".

On the bright side (depending on whether you like to think positive), Feb 29 appears to be a popular day for guys to pop the question. Those who do are decidedly honest about the reason: they only have to remember it once every four years! I have had guy friends who wanted to kick themselves for not setting their marriage dates on Feb 29 after realizing the convenience it would bring them. Bet they didn't know that in some countries, Feb 29 is a day for women to declare their affections. You can read more about leap year traditions here.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Double exposure photography

Was playing around with double exposure shots and the results were so fascinating! Every single shot turned out vastly different, even when the subject was exactly the same. No post-processing whatsoever done on the photos! Don't you think the wild abandon of colour splashed across the self-portraits above are so interesting? Yeah, despite the uncanny resemblance (right down to those yellow eyes) to a certain character straight out of the movie Avatar. Way cool.

Monday, 27 February 2012

A catty wake up call

I have trouble waking up in the mornings, and often ask my friends for wake up calls. No easy task, I know. Which is why I found the cartoon hilarious. And after watching the animation below, I realized I should get a cat.

Okay maybe not.


Friday, 24 February 2012

The Illusionists

It's the weekend! If you were contemplating watching The Illusionists - the 'magic show' billed to feature world class magicians, you may want to continue reading.

The introductory opening act was good. It set the tone for a great show. That's probably why it was so disappointing when the rest of the show failed to live up to the promise it held. Honestly, the show was a little lacklustre - many of the tricks performed by the illusionists were the usual tired suspects that two-bit magicians perform on the television variety programs or on YouTube every so often. The few that were not hardly lived up to their potential due either to sub-par choreography or a lack of showmanship on the part of the illusionists. For example, the escape artist act (one which most would have expected to be one climax of the show) was not as impressive as expected. In fact, it was even a bit anti-climatic when he finally emerged. I think most of the audience was admiring his dripping wet chiseled body rather than the amazing feat he just performed. I know I was. Oops.

To be fair, I sat through the performance with some skepticism because hey we are all smart enough to know it's not really magic right? Doesn't help that the name of the show (flashed onto the screen every few minutes or so) served as a constant niggling reminder that all you're seeing is nothing more than an illusion. But this being my first live magic show in a theatre, I expected to be wowed more, you know? I was also excited enough to buy A Reserve tickets, which did not come cheap at $135 each.

All said, the show was entertaining. But if you're looking to be seriously impressed, then these illusionists will leave you disillusioned.

P/s: The act which got the most laughter was by Michael Halvarson, alias The Trickster. In a video of a previous performance (below), he played the exact same trick on a member of the audience while wearing the same purple suit. In my show, the volunteer was a sporting gentleman (French I think), and Halvarson mischievously took more liberties with him. Among other things, the Trickster announced he found a packet of Viagra pills in the pocket of the thoroughly confused and amused gentleman and proceeded to divest him of his necktie, wrist watch and cigarettes without him noticing. It was cute. And kinda cool.


Thursday, 23 February 2012

Underwater dog photography

Seth Casteel is the amazingly talented photographer behind this stunning series featuring dogs when they are underwater. Their expressions are both candid and artless...a truly refreshing angle from which to explore the worldview of our canine friends. The photos here are those I admire the most. If you're captivated as I have been, more of his work can be found here.

Now, if only I can go about getting a photo of Jessy when she's underwater.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

How hunger comes about

When I first saw this cartoon, the immediate thought that came to mind was "omg how true". It shouldn't be a scene too unfamiliar to most. In this situation, your late order means you join the queue while your friends are already tucking in. By the time you get your order, your companions are almost done and 3 possible scenarios then ensue.

  1. They surreptitiously ration their last few mouthfuls to keep you company for as long as they can.
  2. Impatient glances and/or repeated insinuations along the lines of "How long more are you going to take?"
  3. Attempts at polite conversation are met with prolonged silence because you can only reply in between huge mouthfuls of chugging down what's left on your plate.

Next time, just drink water. Oh, who am I kidding?

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

The secret of the Rain Oculus

We were at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands yesterday when we came across the Rain Oculus by environmental artist and sculptor Ned Kahn of San Francisco's Exploratorium fame.

Some people like to throw coins into the bowl for good luck, but that's just a distraction. No one there is going to tell you this, but the structure's real secret is: if you talk while bending close enough to the rim of the structure, anyone standing anywhere around the circumference of the bowl can hear you just as clearly as if you were standing next to them.

Cool huh? Try that the next time you happen to visit, and surprise the friends you're there with!

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